Hyderabad: Software professionals and residents of colonies in and around Hitec City and other areas in Cyberabad are pooling money to not only protect lakes from land sharks but also to save the water bodies from being reduced to open drains and garbage dumps.
They have succeeded at Nerella Cheruvu, and the fight is still on to save Mundi Kunta lake.
And therein lies a tale.
An unlikely alliance of IT employees and residents, led by Pradeep Gadicherla, convener of the environment wing of ITs AP Association, has succeeded in protecting the Nerella Cheruvu located amidst colonies at Kothaguda near Hitec City.
The group also acts as a “whistle blower”, alerting the GHMC and revenue officials whenever debris is dumped in the lake — the first step by land sharks to grab the area.
Gadicherla, who stays at Aparna Towers, says, “Employees from IT companies stay in colonies near the lakes. We have formed groups along with other residents. Whenever we notice anyone trying to encroach the lake, we raise an alarm, said Pradeep.
It has worked wonders.
The situation is different at Mundi Kunta lake at Khanamet village, on the road to the Hyderabad International Convention Centre. The techies and the other residents are willing to raise `15 lakh to fence the lake, beautify its environs and develop a walkers track around it.
The owners of the 432 apartments at the Meenakshi Sky Lounge have volunteered to pay for the lake’s maintenance, says Sanjeev Arcot, who works at Prosoft.
“We have submitted representations to the GHMC officials and alerted revenue officials about the risk of the lake area being encroached,” he said. “But there seems to be no coordination between the GHMC and the revenue department, due to which our efforts have not borne fruit,” he said.
Techies have taken the lead in canvassing support from residents of colonies, apartment complexes and gated communities near the Mundi Kunta lake, including Aparna Towers, Surya Towers, Aditya Sunshine and Casa Rouge.
The drainage of several colonies flows into the Mundi Kunta lake and the GHMC is not diverting it, said K. Srikant, a Kondapur resident and Cognizant staffer.
“No government agency takes responsibility for the lake. The GHMC says the owner of the water is the irrigation department, and the role of the municipal officials starts outside the full tank level. So we paid to clean the water. The GHMC strengthened the fencing, planted saplings, and installed solar lights. We want this done in Mundi Kunta too,” said T. Mahadev and Kali Prasad of Greater Safari Nagar.
GHMC wezt zone commissioner Sk Aleem Basha said they faced legal complications when they began fencing the lake area. Some persons went to court stating fencing of the available area instead of the full tank level amounts to supporting encroachment. “The boundaries of Mundi Kunta lake have to be demarcated for GHMC to take up fencing,” he said.
Serilingampally tahsildar Rajesham said the boundaries were demarcated over a year ago when a case was filed in the Lok Ayukta and a land grabbing court in connection.
“The lake area is 4 acres and 4 guntas and it is located in survey number 53 of Khanamet village. We do not now why GHMC officials are claiming that the boundaries have not been demarcated,” he said.
Now, this is one glitch for the techies to solve.